Mother’s Day made me reflect on my parenting style and what I needed as a child. I think about my mom so much. Every day actually. When my children are playing outside, when my children run up to me, when my children scream and jump, and create chaos. We couldn’t do those things growing up. My mom has always kept an immaculate home, everything has a place, no clutter, no piles, clean counters, floors… she does not buy frivolous items, only buys what she needs or will use, I mean seriously she is hashtag goals in all of those aspects. Growing up though she was very strict, we were not allowed to get messy, make messes, play with water, or make too much noise. We were all up early, cleaned the house, got dressed, and she would say, “nomas que se me ensucien” seriously we didn’t want to know what that meant, so we wouldn’t. I would always think, when I have kids, I will let them play, get dirty, be loud, create chaos…well the Lord answered my prayers and then some. I have three crazy, loud, messy boys. All three were welcomed into the world by my mother. Last minute decision to have her in the delivery room changed our relationship forever. I was in labor for over 26 hours with my first born and I had pushed so long (I was 25, a baby, had no clue how my body worked) that when it came time to deliver, I was exhausted. My mother who has always been a hard ass, no whining, put your big girl chones on and handle that shit kind of woman, told me, scolded me, in the delivery room when I said I couldn’t do it, she got in my face and said, “Si puedes, o quieres que te corten, andale, tu puedes” and I delivered my almost 9lb baby boy. After that, I realized that although I was always close to my dad, I knew who I would turn to when I needed strength. As a child, she was not affectionate with us, and never said, “I love you” back when we said it, I always wondered if she even did, but now I know… My mom was a monolingual teen mom, miles away from the familiar, working in a factory two weeks after giving birth. She had no time for niceties. She was busy, and tired, and homesick, and lonely. I’ve talked to her about how hard my adjustment has been to being a stay at home mom and she said I should embrace this time, because it goes by too fast and she wishes she could have spent more time with us, but she had to work. I love that lady. I call her, “lady” and I know she loves me too. My heart aches for the sadness and loneliness she must have felt, and since there’s nothing I can do to go back in time to help her with that, all I can do is try to be the mom I needed as a child.